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National Students’ Caucus

Nairobi, Kenya
Joined April 2020

The National Students' Caucus operates within the country. The overall mission of the Caucus is to expand the shrinking civic space within Kenyan universities and by extension the country.

Presence in: Kenya
Focus: Criminal Justice, Education, Gender-based violence, Generalist Legal Services, Governance, Accountability & Transparency

The National Students’ Caucus is a conglomerate of different student leaders across the country. The Caucus is divided into different working groups. Each working group has a specific line of activities it engages in. There is a central working group that coordinates the activities of the other working groups. In as much as each working group enjoys a great level of autonomy, its activities and programs must feed into the overall goal of the caucus.

Since its inception in 2018, the National Students’ Caucus has made serious strides in organizing the student movement. For instance, the caucus through collaboration with different civil society actors organized a successful national student convention at Ufungamano halls towards the end of 2018.

The Caucus has established solid partnerships with organizations such as Haki Africa, the Defenders Coalition, Article 19 Eastern Africa and Amnesty International Kenya. With each organization, the working groups has crafted a specific line of projects to engage in.

People Associated With This Organization

Maxwel Magawi

National Students’ Caucus
Joined April 2020
Interests: Criminal Justice, Education, Gender-based violence, Generalist Legal Services, Governance, Accountability & Transparency
My name is Maxwel Magawi, a final year student of law at the University of Nairobi. Besides academics, I am also deeply involved in student activism and the wider social justice campaigns. Currently, I convene the National Students' Caucus, a conglomerate of progressive student activists from different universities across the country. The overall goal of the caucus is to salvage the shrinking civic spaces within the country's higher learning institutions. From the series of research conducted, the continuing trend of depoliticization of the student community will have a ripple effect on the overall political health of the country. The breeding of a politically lethargic generation of students would mean a citizenry that pays little attention to the political affairs of the day and consequently let so many injustices go uncondemned. Functionally, the National Students' Caucus operates through working groups. These are the Media, Mobilization, Human Rights and Political Education, Protection, Resource Mobilization and Partnership Committee. Through the various committees, the caucus develops and engages in a number of activities with the ultimate intention of resuscitating the dwindling vibrancy of the student movement. The caucus is keen on building helpful work relationship with different organizations across the globe. There are still huge logistical and capacity gaps that the caucus has to deal with. For instance, the Protection Working Group needs to have a rich depth of legal resources to easen its operations. There is need for constant legal guidance and mentorship of the caucus leadership. By joining the network, I also hope that the caucus will be exposed to huge team of lawyers that can help in handling the various cases at the courts. The legal facet gains more relevance owing to the fact that the caucus leadership risks criminalization and even suspensions from schools because of their work. Consequently, the need for legal support can never be more urgent.
Maxwel Magawi is the network champion (main point of contact) for National Students’ Caucus.

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